HeadSpin Proposes Speed Optimizations as Ideal Credit for Citi Mobile


Overview and Methodology For Our Analysis


Banking & Fintech


iPhone 8 / Verizon / Miami

Products Used:

HeadSpin Connected Intelligence Platform



  • Reduce cold start time
  • Reduce HTTP errors to reduce unnecessary API calls
  • Loading screens can be reduced to drive greater user experience
  • Slow server responses can be further improved
  • HeadSpin analyzed the latest version of the Citibank iOS app on a real iPhone 8 in Miami, on the Verizon network.
  • NO SDK, code change or instrumentation was needed to run the remote performance sessions.
  • HeadSpin’s AI engine sifted through network traffic, client-side metrics, and videos of the test execution to find areas of poor user experience and performance bottlenecks.
  • Recommendations were provided for every issue that was surfaced.

User Reviews

Citi Mobile is doing very well overall in terms of user ratings on the App Store.

HeadSpin looked at Citi Mobile’s reviews in the App Store and found some users struggling with functional issues and technical errors.

Citi Mobile’s ratings is currently 4.9/5 on the App Store.

Server Side Insights and Recommendations

HeadSpin’s proprietary AI technology analyzes and prioritizes the core issues impacting critical user journeys. Using computer vision techniques to quantify blank screens, time to interact, loading time, loading or buffering animations, and content quality, our AI models can automatically diagnose server-side issues whether they arise from infrastructure deployment issues, poor performance, or API errors. For a custom analysis of your app, request a Performance Insight report from HeadSpin. 

HeadSpin Performance Session (link)

Slow User Experience Regions

ATM Map Loading takes ~8.59 seconds!

Palo Alto ATM Search takes ~8 seconds.

HTTP Errors

The following HTTP errors were found in our network analysis. Reducing the number of API request errors will help reduce bugs and network usage.

API Call

Loading Animation

During the posting, there were many loading animations on the interface. Shown in the screenshot below, a product category took 9.08 seconds to load. Reducing the loading time would lead to a better user experience.

Slow Server

The API took 1.21 seconds to respond. This API endpoint should be investigated to ensure the backend is performing as expected. Typically we aim for less than 500ms.

API Call

This API Call takes 1.05 seconds to respond.

Client Side Profiling & Recommendations

Using our Client side profiler, companies can monitor every critical user flow for every build of your mobile app. Pinpoint issues that degrade user experience early in the dev cycle Seamlessly integrate with your CI workflow.

Using our Nimble AI profiling platform, we were able to calculate the cold startup time slowdowns for the Citi Mobile app.

Results of the test execution

Slowdowns in detail

Full Call Stack

Launch Timeline

Cold Startup Peer Benchmarking

Citi App performs the best in the cold startup timings (as of November 2019)


How to Work With HeadSpin

HeadSpin Powers Flawless Mobile App Performance

HeadSpin’s state-of-the-art Digital Experience Intelligence Platform™ will empower your engineering teams to:

  • Execute automation tests on real carrier-enabled devices worldwide
  • Discover performance bottlenecks
  • Collect and visualize your performance data
  • Seamlessly integrate with your CI/CD workflow
  • Monitor every critical user flow of your mobile experience
  • Pinpoint issues that cause performance regressions and impact user experience earlier in your development cycle
Overarching Areas of Opportunities

  • Launch new features confidently by monitoring and analyzing root causes of performance issues throughout the development life cycle
  • Drive new user installs and user engagement with optimized performance
  • Forge user trust and safety, accelerating consumer services for critical user paths across your apps and website
  • Benchmark KPIs for mobile performance to understand how your user experience for your mobile app and website compares to your peers in the same industry
  • Support localized testing across 32,000+ devices and 160+ countries around the world, on real devices under real-world conditions
Expert Holistic Consultation and Strategy 

HeadSpin has the product and solutions expertise to help you perfect the digital experience for your customers! Our team hails from digital pioneers, such as Google and Facebook, and has already delivered enhanced mobile-centric experiences for a diverse set of Fortune 1000 clients. HeadSpin’s strategic insights can help you:

  • Drive new user acquisition, user engagement, and feature adoption
  • Deploy app security measures on iOS and Android
  • Build consistent performance standards and experiences across all your mobile apps and websites 

... insight from HeadSpin helps us prioritize issues so we could deliver a better user experience.

Maria Zhang, CTO, Tinder